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FRAMLAU CORPORATION v. DELAWARE COUNTY (12/11/72)

decided: December 11, 1972.

FRAMLAU CORPORATION, APPELLANT,
v.
DELAWARE COUNTY



Appeal from order of Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County, No. 1277 of 1972, in case of Framlau Corporation v. County of Delaware.

COUNSEL

Richard S. Mailman, with him Fine & Mailman, for appellant.

Edward H. P. Fronefield, with him Fronefield, deFuria and Petrikin, for appellee.

Wright, P. J., Watkins, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, Cercone, and Packel, JJ. Opinion by Cercone, J.

Author: Cercone

[ 223 Pa. Super. Page 273]

The problem in this case relates to the sufficiency of plaintiff's amended complaint which, with the exception of the first count, was dismissed by the lower court on defendant's preliminary objections in the nature of a demurrer.

Apparently, plaintiff filed its amended complaint "as of course" following defendant's preliminary objections to the original complaint since the record is silent on any lower court action on the original complaint.

We agree with the lower court's decision holding the amended complaint inadequate and dismissing four of the five counts contained therein.

In the instant case, plaintiff entered into a contract with defendant County for the general construction of a juvenile detention facilities. The work was to have been completed on July 14, 1969, but by reason of extension agreements entered into between the parties the work was not completed until December 17, 1970. Subsequently, plaintiff sued defendant and in the first count of the complaint set forth a claim for an unpaid balance on the contract price. This count sets forth a valid cause of action. The remaining four counts set forth a claim for additional expenses allegedly incurred by plaintiff because defendant wrongfully delayed the work and brought about losses to plaintiff in a manner not contemplated in the contract. The complaint points out delays in the work which admittedly were not caused by defendant nor which placed any obligation on defendant to defray any added expenses

[ 223 Pa. Super. Page 274]

    incurred by plaintiff by reason of said delays. For instance, plaintiff refers to the contract document and to exhibits and makes them part of its pleading. These documents and exhibits reveal that the delays were brought about by strikes in the construction industry, a strike by the bricklayers, the encountering of excessive work on the building site and that these causes of delay were taken into consideration by extension agreements entered into between the parties which changed the completion date of the work from July 14, 1969 to December 17, 1970, and exonerating defendant from any liability to plaintiff for any additional costs incurred by plaintiff by reason of the delay. The documents also reveal that the architect on the job and the defendant County both had the right to suspend work on the premises if in their judgment undue risk of damage to any part of the building would result if plaintiff proceeded with the work during unfavorable weather or other condition and that in the event such decisions were made by architect or defendant County no obligation would fall on defendant County for payment to plaintiff for any additional expenses incurred by plaintiff by reason of any such suspension of work.

It is the contention of plaintiff that other delays not contemplated by the contract and extension agreements were brought about by defendant's disruptive action and that these delays resulted in added expense to plaintiff. In support of this contention plaintiff's complaint charges defendant with the following failures:

"24. Plaintiff was prevented from proceeding with the work required to be performed by it under the Agreement, referred to above in paragraph three, in an orderly, ...


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